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Criminalising Patience Jonathan Is Both Malicious And Unacceptable (READ): Politics : - Nigeria's Premier Online Forum


Criminalising Patience Jonathan Is Both Malicious And Unacceptable (READ)

By: dayan (M) |Time : September 11, 2016, 09:00:29 PM
by Oraye St Franklyn

The media is currently awash with denigrating reactions to Dame Patience Jonathan’s claim of the $31.4 million frozen by the Muhammadu Buhari-led government from accounts belonging to companies linked to her.

While most of the commentators appear excited in their condemnation of the former first lady, very few have given considered thoughts to the issue, especially as raised by the first lady.

In her fundamental rights action before the court, the wife of the former President is asking the court to compel the EFCC to immediately vacate the “No Debit Order” placed on her accounts.

She also says the action of the EFCC WITHOUT A COURT ORDER OR PRIOR NOTICE TO HER IS ILLEGAL, OVERBEARING AND CONSTITUTES A BREACH OF HER FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS as enshrined in Section 33, 34, 35 & 36 of the 1999 Constitution.

She wants the court to order Skye Bank to pay her damages in the sum of N200 million for what she termed a violation of her right to own personal property under Section 44 of the Constitution.

No criminal charge has been brought against the former first lady, and as such, she has no case to answer, which is why the entire freezing episode is in bad taste, malicious and completely unacceptable. One would have thought that the No-Debit-Order placed on the accounts would have been predicated on a formal charge for a known crime and backed by a court order as provided by law. But neither of those was the case; a fact that strengthens her claim for breach of her fundamental rights.

Never in the history of Nigeria has it been a crime to be a person of means. Our very constitution grants all citizens the right to own property. No law forbids the former first lady from embarking on profit making ventures. It, therefore, amounts to an insult and an affront on our constitution to infer that a woman who has been wife of a deputy governor for many years, wife of governor, wife of a vice president, wife of a acting president and then first lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria lacks the capacity to generate money from business concerns in whatever currency she deems fit without being corrupt or falling foul of the law.

If the EFCC has a case against her they should prove it in open court rather than trampling on her rights and attempting to rubbish the image of former President Goodluck Jonathan, a man greatly loved by Nigerians, whose legacies are testamentary of an undying commitment to the wellbeing of the average Nigerian.

Most of all, if no case has been established against Dame Jonathan popularly called Mama Peace, as it does appear, the least that can be done by this government of ‘change’, if nothing else, is to use the same standard that justified General Abacha’s innocence in justifying Dame Jonathan’s innocence, which in reality is what they law provides.

One is deemed innocent until proven otherwise. This government of change cannot rewrite our laws without legislative endorsement.

Enough of the unwarranted harassment and criminalising of innocent Nigerians.

Let Mama Peace be!

Oraye St. Franklyn is a barrister-at-law. He is senior special assistant to Governor Nyesom Wike on Social Media. He is a strategic communicator and good governance advocate, writes from Port Harcourt, Rivers State. He tweets from @RealOraye. He is also on Facebook.

The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.

Re: Criminalising Patience Jonathan Is Both Malicious And Unacceptable (READ)

By: dayan (M) |Time : September 11, 2016, 09:31:44 PM
The only way fight against corruption can work in a country like Nigeria is when it is done without sacred cows.
The problem the Buhari government has is that it is full of sacred cows.
So, they lack legitimacy when they want to prosecute past admin officials.

Re: Criminalising Patience Jonathan Is Both Malicious And Unacceptable (READ)

By: Adenosine (M) |Time : September 11, 2016, 11:25:49 PM
They don't really have clue on who they want to probe. Thats their first action - to frozen their accounts which is illegal. See all the kind section that they have violated. Person that can't really create a complete statement correctly then, now rubbish all your illegal accusation, thats a big shame to EFCC. Start removing corrupt people from the present government first, players - you want your own yanch to remain closed but you are ready to open other people own. Na God go open all una secret. Corrupt leaders.. Mtcheeeew

Re: Criminalising Patience Jonathan Is Both Malicious And Unacceptable (READ)

By: Gideon |Time : September 12, 2016, 08:45:25 AM
I do not see a problem with Efcc case with Ex-first lady... If there are strong evidences by Efcc that Mrs patience is guilty of money laundering and corruption charges,... Then she should be prosecuted... She is not special.

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